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I have written something on this before – how your energy can get drained, how you can feel trapped and whenever you attempt to move away, the person keeps talking at you on things you are not interested in at all!!


I have a feeling that you might know what I am talking about here as I am sure you may have met some during your lifetime either in-depth or simply in passing. And if you haven’t, then you are soooo lucky, I must say.


Who are the Drainers?


In my opinion, these are the ones who:


  • Talk too much about themselves
  • Talk too much about what they do
  • Tell you what they can do for you (whether they can or not!) totally inappropriately
  • Love your ideas and then use them for themselves
  • Take over the conversation all the time
  • Seem unable to realise that you would like to share too
  • Unable to see that their mess needs to be cleared up
  • Don’t see that your eyes have glazed over
  • Leave you drained and exhausted and yet you’re not sure why
  • Don’t pick up on any signals from you or others that you are moving away
  • Cut in before you have finished and tell you that that’s what has happened to them
  • Are always telling you their problems/crises/fantastic happenings when you’ve already heard them
  • Offer to help in some way and somehow it becomes ‘Oh you’ve finished! You should have asked!’
  • Say – ‘Oh I really love what you’re doing and I’ll come’ AND don’t let you know they’re not
  • Say – ‘Please do another event as I know so many who will attend’ AND don’t
  • AND ………………………………………………………………add your ones here


Lack of awareness OR Me, Me, Me!!!


I know that I can hold my hands up to one or two of them on occasion (well, maybe more than that!!) as I know we are all guilty of it in some form or another, at certain times in our lives.     What I’m talking about here is the total lack of awareness that anyone else exists except them.     I am saying that EMPATHY is not part of their vocabulary and for most of the relationship, you really don’t exist as the world revolves around them.   You may have experienced this particularly with teenagers and some simply don’t grow out of it – however long you wait!!


Here are my 16 ways to deal with this behaviour


I am encouraging you to –


  • Say ‘NO’ simply and clearly
  • Move away from their monopoly of you in whatever way is good for you
  • Smile, look at your watch and say ‘I have to catch/do ………’
  • Say, ‘I’d like to take a raincheck on this for later’.
  • Not allow their energy to disturb you – let go and move on
  • Reconnect with the fact that you deserve to be in the company of compassionate, caring, lively people and go do that
  • Withdraw your energy from them so you protect yourself
  • Accept them as they are and you can choose not to be around them and so limit your interactions with them
  • Bring humour into the conversation
  • Don’t allow yourself to be manipulated as they are well versed in this
  • In a group, say clearly – we have to move on now
  • On an appropriate occasion, tell them in private what you’ve observed (scary one to do) and see what their response is……….
  • Look at your fear behind dealing with it
  • Take four deep breaths and then respond
  • Realise there is no ‘magic wand’ and change won’t happen for some however long you wait
  • Finally, treat yourself with the time, acceptance and respect you give to them




When someone is authentically needing you to be there for them, you will know.   You will choose to be open, be alongside them and simply listen regardless.    You and I are only human and also need to take care of us too.


Let me know how you deal with the ‘drainers’ in your life.

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When you want to be with someone who will appreciate you, your strengths and your struggles while using her sense of humour to uplift you, then contact me. I look forward to hearing from you.

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6 Responses

  • Hi Irene.

    I feel for the drainers you’ve described a I’ve been there. Now I realise they often don’t feel heard, or have issues with their self-value, so if I can (or am in the right mood) I do listen and let them talk it out, but when not in the right mood (not feeling it?) I do cut them off in some way in which case I probably appear just like them. Lol!

  • Hey Irene, as an empath I very easily get drained by the types of people that you have described. As a slight twist though I think I have sometimes been a drainer, I love to help but in the past have become quite evangelical about new things that I have learned etc and may well have come across a bit me, me, me or a little unaware of the eyes glazing over haha. A lovely and thought provoking post. thank you.

  • Brilliant article, Irene! Definitely, a must share! I have to admit that I still have problems saying “NO”. Hope to overcome it, soon. Thanks for taking your time to write this valuable piece.

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